A really, really wonderful review… Mahalo…

Books and Publications, He Mele A Hilo, Random Thoughts at 3 AM / Wednesday, September 2nd, 2015
 So, Stephanie Barbé Hammer just wrote a beautiful review of He Mele A Hilo At first, I was speechless–reviews from readers are always cherished, but this was so enthusiastic and so dead on.  (Besides, how often does one get mentioned in the same article as Yowamushi Pedal?!?)

I feel, in this time of so much violence and ugliness, the painfully regular murders and suicides of trans women of color…that a work that is not dystopian is, its own way, subversive.

It is a mistake to assume that a writer’s desire to write about what is pretty, or even pastoral, implies that she is blind to the cruelty around her. It may be closer to the truth that the realities of day to day inhumanity can inspire a writer to imagine better, gentler worlds where one’s common humanity is recognized and implicitly honored. I have mourned too many friends. I have been to vigils. This is kind of how life is for a trans woman of color. I mean–it’s just how it is.  I teach students self defense, then hear about how they have actually had to use it because they have been attacked in so many dehumanizing ways.

For me, writing a novel where goodness actually might not be hokey, that might prevail, that might transform the world into something better–this is my way to say to a sometimes terrible world, “You’ve not destroyed me.” Not only that, you’ve not taken away my ability to believe in something better. You’ve not even taken away my ability to dance, to play music, to have a picnic, or to have fun.  You’ve not taken away my memories, not even the good ones. Now, watch me go. HIME!!!!!!